Social Question

sleepdoc's avatar

Where is the line with the in-laws?

Asked by sleepdoc (4690points) March 9th, 2010

My wife and her sister are having a disagreement about the way her sister is handling a relationship in her life. To cut to the chase my wife did something that my sister doesn’t like. My mother-in-law called my to ask me to do something behind my wife’s back in order to “solve” (her word) the problem. I told her I was not getting into the middle of this and neither should she. Her daughters are adults and they should work this out. What are your thoughts?

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26 Answers

syz's avatar

Stick to your guns and stay out of it. Your responsibility is your relationship with your wife. Make no judgments on whether you agree or disagree with her, just stay neutral.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

You are a smart man.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

Oh, yeah. Neither your wife nor her sister will appreciate you (or even the mother in law) getting involved.

kevbo's avatar

I would say this is less of an in-law issue as it is an issue about how most women handle conflict (vs most men).

bunnygrl's avatar

Agreed. You should never ever go behind your wife’s back. Ever. You are part of a partnership, you should be in your wife’s corner always, without question. In this case though, it sounds like its between her and her sister. Let them sort it out (as families always do eventually) and stay out of it. If you butt in, no matter how good your intentions are, you’ll end up the bad guy in some way or other.

Trillian's avatar

Good man. He can be taught! At the end of the day, you made vows to your wife; ”...forsaking all others, cleaving only unto her.”
You could just let her know that you’ve got her back, then step out of the line of fire until she asks you for whatever.
I’d also tell her about what your MIL asked you to do, so if it comes out later, you don’t seem to have been keeping secrets.

sleepdoc's avatar

I had pretty much decided that she and her sister need to work this out. I guess I am just bothered that he mom would call me to start with and ask me to get involved AND do something behind my wife’s back.

sleepdoc's avatar

@Trillian I already have talked to my wife about it.

CMaz's avatar

“having a disagreement about the way her sister is handling a relationship ”

Sounds like something that you do not need to be a part of.

Cruiser's avatar

Give them boxing gloves and let them settle it like a man.

john65pennington's avatar

I was fortunate. my in-laws never interferred with family problems. when a problem surfaced, they kept a zipper on their mouth. i assumed they figured that we were all adults and could resolve the problems ourselves and we did.

This is not a good situation for you. you cannot win, no matter what position you take. you are heading in the right direction. stay out of it. your comments or opinion could possibly just add fuel to the fire and create a problem between you and your wife.

Best advice is to lay low and just listen, as you are doing.

Just_Justine's avatar

I think you are very wise. The messenger always gets shot in the end.

sleepdoc's avatar

@Just Justine LOL at first glance I thought your post read, “The messenger always gets shot in the head”.

ModernEpicurian's avatar

Yep, as is said above sooo many times.
Just leave it :-)
Sisters have disagreements, that’s just how the world works.
Stand back, and watch the love flow back between them :-)

sleepdoc's avatar

@ChazMaz I wasn’t intending to be part of it. I guess I am just bothered that my mother-in-law wanted to make me part of it.

ucme's avatar

Attached to the gallows.

partyparty's avatar

Don’t get involved in this. You may end up being called a trouble maker. Let your wife and her sister sort it out for themselves.
Your mother-in-law was out of order asking this of you. Shame on her.

marinelife's avatar

Very wise of you. Your loyalty lies with your wife.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

The in-laws, mine or his, will not come between us. Ever. And they shouldn’t. We both have issues with our own and each other’s mothers.

Trillian's avatar

@sleepdoc just remind yourself that you couldn’t,all things considered, expect any better.

gailcalled's avatar

Using a third party as a moderator is called triangulation and should never be tried by a relative or family member. Only use professional arbitrators.

You are teaching your m-i-l, who should already know this, a valuable lesson.

thriftymaid's avatar

Your attitude is right on.

YARNLADY's avatar

I suggest you tell her to ask a professional because you aren’t qualified or inclined to get involved.

sleepdoc's avatar

Thanks for all the answers. I guess I was just so… well shocked that she would call me about this I couldn’t even belive it.

desertr0se's avatar

I agree with most of those answers. You support your wife but stay out of any issues she may have with her side of the family.

momnipotence's avatar

Sounds like something my mother would do…oh wait..she has done this…and nothing good came of it. Best to keep out of it.

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